The Grand Canyon. Part I: Getting there and Yavapai Lodge

After partying up in Vegas, we left to seek the great outdoors – the Grand Canyon.

There are only 3 different ways to see the Grand Canyon:

  1. By helicopter.
  2. By tour bus.
  3. Drive. (Self)

The helicopter ride is an expensive but quick way to see the Grand Canyon. It only takes a few hours of your day, but you do miss the sunrise and the sunset. However, you get to see the Grand Canyon with a bird’s-eye view. Unless you’re pressed for time, I wouldn’t recommend the bus ride from Las Vegas. Going to and fro would take a total of 12 hours and again, you miss both the sunrise and the sunset. So we decided to drive and spend 3 days there to fully soak in the beauty of the Grand Canyon.

IMG_4028We set out on our journey immediately after checking out of the Bellagio, Las Vegas – to make sure we arrived before night fall.

After six tiring, butt-aching hours, we finally made it to Yavapai Lodge. We only made two stops in-between: one for coffee at Starbucks and the other for my birthday lunch. FYI: If you ever plan to drive and stay at the Grand Canyon, the park fee (for driving your car in) is 25USD, valid for 7 days.

1964951_10152339432911388_1183301772_nBirthday meal at Cracker Barrel.

10009280_10152352063201388_393042486_nFarm fresh southern food.

IMG_3580Oh, we also stopped for this jump shot with a view.

IMG_3611Yavapai Lodge is located along one of the many lookout points along the south rim. It is walking distance (0.5 miles) from the lodge to the canyon edge. It is the largest lodge at the canyon with over 198 rooms scattered within the area (rooms are single or double storey buildings) and within convenient walking distance from other village services (the grocer, Chase Bank, the Canyon Village Marketplace and the post office).

IMG_3610They are slightly more expensive (about 200 ++ USD a night) but we had a forest view which was definitely worth it. Our room was 10 minutes (on foot) from the main building which housed the reception, canteen and the gift shop.

IMG_3609The gift shop.

IMG_3613Our ride and our crib.

IMG_3617I love the room, so homey and warm. It was very decent with two triple sheeted queen sized beds, heater (A MUST!), tv and a refrigerator. IMG_3616 IMG_3618Toilets are the first thing I check whenever staying out. They have to be clean.

After checking in, we managed to catch the last meal at the Canyon Café (closes at 8pm). If you are feeling hungry after 8pm, you can drive to Bright Angel Lodge which is about 5 minutes away to catch a quick meal. They close at 10pm.

We collected some maps and got some handy tips from the lady at the lobby.

IMG_4019 IMG_4020 It was below 10 degrees C outside and the temperature continued to drop throughout the night. We had a very comforting chicken dinner before heading to bed early.

Next post: The Sunrise and Sunset!

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